News Roundup: NFL Healthcare Benefits, Transgender Healthcare in Ohio News Roundup: NFL Healthcare Benefits, Transgender Healthcare in Ohio

In this week’s News Roundup: UnitedHealth committing fraud (allegedly), a report on NFL healthcare benefits, and a win for transgender healthcare in Ohio.

Harvard Law School published an independent study exploring the National Football League’s health policies and practices. The report compares NFL safety practices and healthcare benefits with those provided to pro athletes in five other North American sports leagues: MLB, NHL, NBA, Major League Soccer, and the Canadian Football League.

The Justice Department has accused UnitedHealth Group–the largest health insurance company in the U.S.–of defrauding the federal government by more than $1 billion through its Medicare Advantage plans. In a 79-page lawsuit filed on Tuesday, UnitedHealth is accused of exaggerating diagnoses of Medicare beneficiaries in order to make them appear sicker (and thereby obtain more money).

The Trump administration’s aggressive policies of detaining and deporting undocumented immigrants is posing new challenges for healthcare providers who serve immigrant communities. On Thursday the Massachusetts attorney general issued guidelines to help healthcare providers reassure patients who fear they could be deported or arrested while seeking medical services.

New York Times health columnist Jane E. Brody explained to readers how emergency rooms work.

Rachel Dovel, a transgender librarian employed by The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County, sued the library after her health insurance refused to cover the cost of gender confirmation surgery. On Monday, her attorneys announced she reached a settlement with the library; LBGTQ rights advocates say the lawsuit may set a precedent for the constitutional argument against anti-transgender discrimination in healthcare.

The 10-year collaboration will feature co-located, multidisciplinary teams with broad access to data, computational infrastructure, and clinical expertise. The initial focus of the project is on developing applications to improve clinician productivity and patient outcomes in diagnostic imaging.

As the GOP health bill moves to the U.S. Senate, many worry that people with pre-existing conditions won’t be able to find affordable health coverage if the bill becomes law. A solution touted by House Republicans borrows an idea from a program Maine had in place before the Affordable Care Act. It’s called an invisible high-risk pool — “invisible” because people in Maine didn’t even know when they were in it. Maine’s statewide pool existed from 2012 until 2014.

It’s almost summer! Don’t drink the pool water.

Tens of thousands of New Jersey residents insured by Aetna will be forced to find new health insurance in 2018 if the company withdraws from the state’s individual and small-group health insurance markets. You can read more of our reporting on this issue here.

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Erica Block

About Erica Block

Erica Block is an Editorial Fellow at, where she gets to combine her interest in healthcare policy with her penchant for creating online content. When she isn't reading or writing, Erica can be found wandering around Brooklyn, playing softball, or listening to podcasts. She counts music, rescue dogs, and lumberjack sports among her greatest passions. Follow Erica on Twitter: @EricaDaleBlock